Monte Kiffin leads cheers during Bucs Ring of Honor induction

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TAMPA — The patriarch of the Tampa Two defense, Monte Kiffin never lacked enthusiasm.

So it was no surprise that the former long-time Bucs defensive coordinator led the cheers when he was inducted into the team’s Ring of Honor at halftime of the Bucs-Falcons game Sunday.

Kiffin, 81, was surrounded by son Lane and several Bucs greats such as Warren Sapp, Derrick Brooks, Mike Alstott, Ronde Barber and Jimmie Giles during the presentation as his name was unveiled in the southeast corner of the end zone next to Tony Dungy’s.

Lane Kiffin, the Ole Miss coach, attended despite his game against Tulane ending at 1:12 a.m. Sunday.

When Monte Kiffin took the microphone, he did a spin on the Tampa Bay cheer. “Say Tampa,” Kiffin said. “Say Two!”

And the crowd at Raymond James Stadium obliged.

Kiffin became the 14th inductee into the Bucs Ring of Honor and the only assistant coach to have that prestigious recognition.

The Bucs had the NFL’s most dominant defense under Kiffin. From 1996-2008, the Bucs allowed 17.4 points per game, the fewest in the league during that period. Their 293 takeaways were second only to the Ravens (306).

Kiffin ranks as the longest-tenured coach in franchise history, having spent 13 seasons with the organization under Dungy and Jon Gruden from 1996-2008.

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